Oscar Garcia claimed his first win as Brighton manager thanks to Andy Crofts's winner at Birmingham.
The visitors went close when Leonardo Ulloa's header was pushed wide by goalkeeper Darren Randolph.
Ulloa also shot off target when well placed before efforts from Birmingham duo Andrew Shinnie and Lee Novak hit the woodwork.
Brighton's win over Birmingham is their first at St Andrew's since 1989
Crofts then latched on to a Kemy Agustien pass to score with a measured strike.
Victory will come as a relief to Garcia after Brighton lost their opening three games of the season, following his summer appointment.
Defender Stephen Ward and midfielder Keith Andrews played influential roles on their full debuts for the Seagulls, while centre-back Matthew Upson impressed against his former side.
The game opened up in the latter stages and Agustien had a strike impressively saved by Randolph before setting up Crofts for the winner in the 73rd minute.
Birmingham manager Lee Clark
"It is frustrating and I cannot keep saying we deserved better from the game.
"If we keep giving away disappointing goals like we did against Brighton it has to be frustrating.
"The players have already seen the goal on the footage because I was so angry and disappointed because it was so poor. We needed to talk about it as soon as possible.
"They had five players in the move who were never pressed and the deep midfield runner had a free run to score. You cannot do that at this level because you get punished.
"I am gutted for the fans because the support they have given the squad is unbelievable and all I want is to give them some positive results."
Brighton boss Oscar Garcia
"I am a pleased with the win but I am a person who does not look just at the result. I want to watch the overall performance.
"We knew that our performances in the other games have been good but we have not been accurate in front of goal. At this level the most important thing is the points. We want to build a successful team but it will take time.
"I want to dedicate the win to all the fans of Brighton, especially those who travelled to the game."
Live text and stats
Saturday, 17 August 2013
04 Robinson yellow card
02 Eardley yellow card
26 Allan (Green 82)
27 Ferguson (Arthur 84)
22 Shinnie (Burke 67)
03 Greer yellow card
10 Agustien (Ince 83)
21 David Lopez (Caskey 60)
30 Buckley (Barnes 68 yellow card)
Ref: HooperAtt: 14,885
Attempts on target
Attempts off target
90:00+4:39 The referee signals the end of the game.
90:00+4:04 Inigo Calderon manages to make a clearance.
90:00+3:41 Free kick crossed by Paul Robinson.
90:00+3:21 Booking for Ashley Barnes for unsporting behaviour.
90:00+3:15 Unfair challenge on Koby Arthur by Ashley Barnes results in a free kick.
90:00+2:26 Header by Dan Burn misses to the right of the target.
90:00+2:20 A cross is delivered by Neal Eardley.
90:00+2:19 The ball is crossed by Neal Eardley.
90:00+2:05 Clearance made by Darren Randolph.
90:00+1:48 Matthew Upson manages to make a clearance.
90:00+1:41 Centre by Koby Arthur.
90:00+0:42 Inigo Calderon manages to make a clearance.
90:00+0:37 Free kick crossed by Wade Elliott.
90:00+0:09 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Matt Green by Gordon Greer.
89:43 Free kick taken by Darren Randolph.
89:35 Ashley Barnes is flagged offside by the assistant referee.
88:43 Free kick taken by Darren Randolph.
88:24 Dan Burn fouled by Ashley Barnes, the ref awards a free kick.
88:06 The ball is delivered by Koby Arthur.
87:33 Free kick taken by Rohan Ince.
85:42 Gordon Greer fouled by Matt Green, the ref awards a free kick.
84:37 Shot by Andrew Crofts cleared the crossbar.
84:24 Corner taken by Jake Caskey.
84:08 Tom Adeyemi takes the free kick.
83:54 Foul by Keith Andrews on Koby Arthur, free kick awarded.
83:45 Substitution Shane Ferguson goes off and Koby Arthur comes on.
82:03 Substitution (Brighton) makes a substitution, with Rohan Ince coming on for Kemy Agustien.
81:43 Substitution Scott Allan goes off and Matt Green comes on.
79:29 The ball is sent over by Shane Ferguson.
79:04 Clearance by Matthew Upson.
78:59 Centre by Christopher Burke.
78:22 Gordon Greer manages to make a clearance.
78:18 The ball is sent over by Paul Robinson.
77:13 Stephen Ward restarts play with the free kick.
77:07 Booking for Neal Eardley.
76:37 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Ashley Barnes by Neal Eardley.
76:06 Shane Ferguson crosses the ball.
72:19 Assist by Kemy Agustien.
72:19 GOAL - Andrew Crofts:Birmingham 0 - 1 Brighton Andrew Crofts slots the ball right footed into the goal. Birmingham 0-1 Brighton.
69:51 Scott Allan takes a shot and went wide left of the goal.
67:04 Substitution Ashley Barnes is brought on as a substitute for Will Buckley.
66:18 Substitution Christopher Burke joins the action as a substitute, replacing Andrew Shinnie.
65:34 Corner from the left by-line taken by Wade Elliott.
64:59 Shot on goal comes in from Shane Ferguson from the free kick.
63:21 Andrew Shinnie fouled by Gordon Greer, the ref awards a free kick.
63:05 Matthew Upson manages to make a clearance.
63:02 Shane Ferguson produces a cross.
61:46 Hayden Mullins produces a cross.
61:02 Paul Robinson restarts play with the free kick.
60:54 The official flags Will Buckley offside.
59:19 Darren Randolph restarts play with the free kick.
59:07 Substitution (Brighton) makes a substitution, with Jake Caskey coming on for David Lopez.
58:50 Will Buckley challenges Tom Adeyemi unfairly and gives away a free kick.
58:23 Free kick crossed by David Lopez.
58:14 Neal Eardley concedes a free kick for a foul on Will Buckley.
57:25 Keith Andrews takes the free kick.
57:15 Free kick awarded for a foul by Tom Adeyemi on Keith Andrews.
55:30 Jose Ulloa takes a shot and missed to the left of the net.
55:16 A cross is delivered by Will Buckley.
53:33 Clearance by Matthew Upson.
53:29 Centre by Shane Ferguson.
50:26 Lee Novak takes a shot.
49:29 Lee Novak takes a shot and bounced off the bar.
48:07 Andrew Shinnie takes a shot and hits the bar.
47:49 Paul Robinson takes the free kick.
47:45 The referee blows for offside against Jose Ulloa.
46:48 Hayden Mullins takes the free kick.
46:42 Handball decision goes against Kemy Agustien.
46:03 David Lopez has an effort at goal. Darren Randolph parries the ball away.
45:19 Andrew Shinnie takes the chance to get an effort at goal and missed to the left of the goal.
45:01 The referee starts the second half.
45:00+2:11 The match has reached half-time.
45:00+0:07 Andrew Shinnie takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Tomasz Kuszczak catches the ball.
44:48 Free kick taken by Darren Randolph.
44:34 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Shane Ferguson by Inigo Calderon.
44:15 Paul Robinson makes a clearance.
44:12 A cross is delivered by Stephen Ward.
41:40 Clearance made by Kemy Agustien.
41:15 Scott Allan produces a cross.
41:09 Corner taken by Wade Elliott.
38:43 Scott Allan takes a shot and went wide left of the target.
35:56 Darren Randolph restarts play with the free kick.
35:46 The official flags Jose Ulloa offside.
35:28 David Lopez restarts play with the free kick.
35:17 Hayden Mullins challenges Jose Ulloa unfairly and gives away a free kick.
34:45 Wade Elliott takes a shot and went wide of the right hand upright.
34:05 Clearance made by Matthew Upson.
34:00 A cross is delivered by Wade Elliott.
33:34 Dan Burn restarts play with the free kick.
33:23 Will Buckley is flagged offside by the assistant referee.
33:09 Paul Robinson restarts play with the free kick.
33:03 Dan Burn fouled by Jose Ulloa, the ref awards a free kick.
32:57 Stephen Ward sends in a cross.
32:31 Scott Allan takes a shot and cleared the net.
31:09 Darren Randolph takes the free kick.
30:52 Keith Andrews concedes a free kick for a foul on Paul Robinson.
30:41 Corner taken by David Lopez from the right by-line.
29:31 Clearance by Jose Ulloa.
29:19 Wade Elliott restarts play with the free kick.
29:14 Gordon Greer is shown a yellow card.
29:03 Unfair challenge on Andrew Shinnie by Gordon Greer results in a free kick.
28:11 Gordon Greer makes a clearance.
28:08 Neal Eardley sends in a cross.
27:40 Wade Elliott restarts play with the free kick.
27:21 Dan Burn fouled by Jose Ulloa, the ref awards a free kick.
27:09 Clearance made by Tomasz Kuszczak.
26:46 Paul Robinson takes the free kick.
26:33 Lee Novak fouled by Gordon Greer, the ref awards a free kick.
23:25 Hayden Mullins restarts play with the free kick.
23:09 Unfair challenge on Hayden Mullins by Will Buckley results in a free kick.
22:50 Darren Randolph restarts play with the free kick.
22:38 Will Buckley gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Hayden Mullins.
22:32 Inigo Calderon produces a cross.
21:39 Stephen Ward takes a shot and goes harmlessly over the bar.
21:26 Corner taken by David Lopez from the left by-line.
20:58 Clearance made by Hayden Mullins.
20:15 Jose Ulloa takes the chance to get an effort at goal and missed to the right of the goal.
18:49 Darren Randolph restarts play with the free kick.
18:26 Will Buckley is ruled offside.
18:03 A cross is delivered by Neal Eardley.
17:36 Free kick taken by Keith Andrews.
17:05 Lee Novak gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Keith Andrews.
16:06 Jose Ulloa has a headed effort at goal.
16:03 Will Buckley produces a cross.
15:35 Clearance made by Darren Randolph.
12:14 Darren Randolph makes a clearance.
10:56 Centre by Neal Eardley.
10:23 Clearance by Scott Allan.
10:14 Dan Burn manages to make a clearance.
10:08 Free kick taken by Inigo Calderon.
9:55 Paul Robinson booked for unsporting behaviour.
9:43 Paul Robinson gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Will Buckley.
9:27 Stephen Ward restarts play with the free kick.
9:14 Unfair challenge on Jose Ulloa by Neal Eardley results in a free kick.
8:19 Will Buckley takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Darren Randolph safely holds on.
8:07 Hayden Mullins manages to make a clearance.
8:03 A cross is delivered by Inigo Calderon.
6:01 Clearance by Dan Burn.
5:56 Inigo Calderon produces a cross.
4:45 Wade Elliott has a direct shot on goal from the free kick.
4:16 Gordon Greer concedes a free kick for a foul on Andrew Shinnie.
2:35 Dan Burn manages to make a clearance.
2:31 Centre by Inigo Calderon.
0:53 The ball is sent over by Shane Ferguson.
0:00 The referee gets the match started.
Live text and data provided by The Press Association.
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